8 Parrot Training Do's & Don'ts

Learn eight parrot training do's and don'ts from Parrot Wizard Michael Sazhin in this Howcast video.

Some dos and don’ts of parrot training. Do remember that parrots are birds, first and foremost. You can’t just think that they’re a dog and they’re going to automatically open up to people. They’re naturally wild animals and you have to let them express their birdedness. It might involve some flying, some screaming.

You have to accept them and live with it. We’re going to try to encourage best behavior within that scope that we can, but you do have to accept them as the bird that they are. Do work on your relationship, first and foremost. This is the basis of successful trick training. Your parrot needs to trust you and be able to step on your hand, allow you to hold it and grab it.

By developing the relationship, you’re able to achieve everything else. Without a solid relationship in place, you can’t expect to have successful trick training. Don’t expect results immediately. Training is a time-consuming process. Sometimes it’s a matter of repetition, but sometimes it’s just a matter of doing it enough days or enough months in a row for it to sink into the parrot that this is the routine and habit that it needs to be in.

Don’t train your parrot when it is tired. Don’t push your parrot beyond its limits. Don’t do anything to scare your parrot. Instead, break it down into smaller pieces that it can manage and work on it from there. If you remember nothing else, remember not to give up. This is a time-consuming, difficult process. Parrots are difficult animals. It’s not easy. It wasn’t easy for me. It’s not going to be easy for you.

I understand that this is a difficult process that’s going to take a lot of time and patience. But the most important thing is that you persevere. The only way that you can guarantee failure is by giving up. If you don’t give up, that’s the one way that you can ensure that you’re going to work towards manageable goals and achieve what you’re looking to get with your bird. Please refer to my book, "The Parrot Wizard’s Guide to Well-Behaved Parrots", for more tips and tricks about building the relationship with your parrot.